Around our house, you will often hear these words spoken to our children, “listen and obey.” Of course, we want our children to hear the words that we are speaking, but ultimately what we want is for them to obey.  We want them to act on the words we are telling them. We want their hearts to understand that we want what is best for them; even if the action we are asking them to take does not match their desires. This same principle applies to our Father in heaven. He wants what’s best for us. He wants us to love him with all of ourselves, and in doing so, He wants us to listen and obey.

Deuteronomy 6:4-5
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.

The first word, hear, is translated from the Hebrew word shema.  This word does mean to hear or listen, but it goes further than that. It is an understanding deeper than the words entering your ears.  It’s an understanding that leads to a response, to an action. Shema means to listen and obey. As we listen to what the Lord is calling us to and as we respond in action, we must continue to shema.  We must continually be open to correction, knowing and trusting that our Father in heaven wants what is best for us.

So now around our house, you will hear us say to our children, “shema.”

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